Spirit and effort in Harrisonville
By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
It looked like a game and felt like a game but there were no scores and everyone left with some positives as Harrisonville hosted Belton, Truman and Kearney in a Jamboree Friday night.
The teams rotated through three 12-play sessions where each team had the ball. It was an interesting matchup of Class 5 teams (Truman and Belton) and Class 4 teams (Kearney and Harrisonville). The teams mixed and matched between the classes before ending with 5 vs. 5 and 4 vs. 4.
Kearney came in with a lot of energy on both sides of the ball. The Bulldogs played a spirited round with Belton to open the match before going up against Truman.
“Our kids have two options, either show energy or fake energy,” Kearney coach Greg Jones said. “That’s the only two options.”
The final session saw Kearney go up against the host school and much like a regular season or post season game there was plenty of intensity. Jones said anytime two programs like Kearney and Harrisonville get together there is going to be a high amount of effort.
“When you go against Harrisonville and the Webb City’s that’s when the emotions hit the fans,” Jones said.
Truman opened up with Harrisonville and had some positive plays but battled some penalties as well. The second round saw them go against Kearney and the Bulldogs defense kept the Patriots in check for most of the session.
The final session Truman’s defense stood up well against Belton. The Patriots set the tone in the first few plays as Jordan Salima grabbed an interception in the endzone. Salima said it was good to get something positive on the defensive side of the ball and have a chance to play in game-like conditions.
“We were really focusing on getting our technique right,” Salima said. “Later in the games we will have our adrenaline rush so it will be better but right now we need to focus on our craft and make sure we get it right.
The Patriots grabbed another interception later in the scrimmage as the defense was opportunistic against the fellow Class 5 team.
Truman opens with Lee’s Summit next week and it is the first almost game like competition since last October when the Patriots ended with a winning season for the first time since 2004.
Salima said the winning last year makes the team excited heading into the first game next week.
“It was the best feeling ever (a winning season),” Salima said. “Once you get that taste of losing in your mouth you don’t want it anymore. We’re starting winning and it is starting to come closer.”
Belton and Harrisonville both had good moments. Both teams bring back a good amount of experience and did a good job of getting reps without getting anyone hurt.
“I wish we wound have made not so many mistakes tonight,” Belton coach Todd Vaughn said. “It would have been more enjoyable but we played a lot of kids. We see progress. Anytime you see that as a coach you know you are doing things right.”
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